Tanzania ICS

Tanzania welcomes the advance team: Who are they? What will they be doing?

31st January 2018

Words by Rebbie Webb, communications officer for expedition & ICS this spring cycle.

Images by Hilary Sloane, Tanzania spring cycle photographer.

“Play your part, it can be done.”

- 30th January quote of the day by Tino, spring cycle deputy operations manager.

Last week the advance team arrived safe and well at the Raleigh Tanzania fieldbase in Morogoro. The advance team comprises the volunteers who will be based in fieldbase whilst making visits to project sites throughout the course of the spring expedition and ICS programmes to fulfil their role requirements. The advance team arrive in-country early in order to get settled into their roles with time to prepare for the arrival of the volunteers. All members, whether logistics coordinator, medic, communications officer, deputy operations manager or photographer, will work to ensure smooth running of the spring programmes. Fieldbase is a lively place into which the team received a very warm welcome.

“I have worked at Raleigh Tanzania for a couple of cycles now and one of my favourite aspects of the role is having a Tanzanian counterpart. Working with counterparts not only makes the job more enjoyable, but the insight they have into the communities we work in, and our overarching goals is incredible. I love how the majority of the staff here are Tanzanian, it makes the office a pretty special place to be where I am continually learning so much.”
– Ffion, spring cycle deputy operations manager.

Deputy Operations Manager Ffion. Image by Hilary, spring cycle photographer.

Many of this cycle’s volunteers have previously volunteered for Raleigh in Tanzania as well as other countries Raleigh operate in. New and familiar faces enjoyed an exuberant welcome and the atmosphere was jubilant. The advance team were immediately immersed into the positive, collaborative environment which is thriving here at Raleigh’s fieldbase in Morogoro.

Integration of Tanzanian and international volunteers at fieldbase is key to the effectiveness of Raleigh’s programmes, from ensuring programme delivery in Kiswahili to enabling adoption amongst Tanzanians growing up in the regions Raleigh operate in.

Introductory learning session during the advance team’s first week. Image by Hilary.

Flexible, adaptable, and equipped with excellent organisational skills, our four logistics co-ordinators, Scholar, Jo, Judy and Nicki are looking for a challenge whilst also wanting to learn and develop new skills. Nicki has volunteered for Raleigh many times and offers her team a wealth of experience, whilst Judy and Jo are looking to gain experience in a more remote environment. The team are busy setting everything up from stock tacking to working with suppliers to source and order food.

Logictics team at fieldbase. Image by Rebbie, communications officer.

For logistics co-ordinator Jo, this is the first time she has volunteered for Raleigh, “we are a really diverse group of people of all ages, backgrounds and nationalities and yet we are all likeminded people. We all believe in Raleigh’s objectives which has made living and working together easy from the start. What seemed strange at the beginning has quickly become normal.”

Jo (far left) and Nicki from the logistics team sorting through stock at fieldbase. Image by spring cycle photographer, Hilary.

Deputy Operations Managers

“I have really enjoyed my first week here at fieldbase. Everyone is so welcoming and I felt comfortable straight away. I’ve really enjoyed the ‘family feel’ that the staff and building provide. We eat lunch together in a large communal dining area outside and take it in turns to cook dinner for everyone, it feels like a real family unit.”

– Alanah-May Swain, deputy operations manager.

The deputy operations managers are responsible for programme delivery. They have been busy so far, organising the training schedule for the volunteer managers (expedition) and team leaders (ICS) and planning the induction for the volunteers.

Fieldbase deputy op’s managers working with country operations Owen and Vanessa. “Working altogether in one large office you get the sense of togetherness and never feel like you are working alone on any piece of work. When you are beginning a new position with new responsibilities and tasks, this type of environment is definitely one that puts you at ease.” – Deputy operations manager Kim.
Image by Hilary.

Deputy operations manager Onesmo has volunteered for Raleigh previously too; first as a volunteer in 2016 and then later as a team leader for two cycles last year. This is the first time Onesmo will take on a deputy operations manager role, “Raleigh work with the community and my ambition is to contribute my knowledge of the projects as well as skills I have honed over the past few years with Raleigh. I want to continue to be part of the solution. I will work with John and Alanah-May [Onesmo’s deputy op’s counterparts] in partnership: we are already planning together, this will be a great experience.”

Advance medics
Advance medics Gavin and Dan are working hard preparing the medical teaching documents ready for training of all volunteers in the coming weeks, whilst doing one-to-ones with all the team to make sure everyone stays healthy. This week they have been auditing and making up the medical kits ready for both expedition and ICS spring programmes.

Advance medics Gav (left) and Dan (right) at fieldbase. Image by communications officer, Rebbie.

Gavin recently volunteered for Raleigh in Nepal during the ICS autumn cycle, “I wanted to volunteer for Raleigh to do something different and get out in the world. Today I’m preparing for the arrival of the ICS team leaders and expedition volunteer managers. In their induction we’ll hold a day of medical training with team leaders on first aid as well as helping with incident management and supporting the mental health of volunteers. In Nepal I put a lot of time into planning and organising sessions in Nepal so I’ll be using that experience to bring fellow advance medic Dan up to speed and later the expedition medics too.”

Gavin, Hilary and Dan out exploring Morogoro town where fieldbase is. Image by Rebbie, communications officer.

Communications team
Photographer Hilary and communications officer Rebbie will play a key role in helping to create awareness about Raleigh’s work in Tanzania. Their work will populate the blog and social media channels; they will be covering pieces themselves and commissioning and editing pieces from volunteers. They look forward to sharing how young people are driving the programmatic work being undertaken in country. Both Rebbie and Hilary have volunteered for Raleigh previously: Hilary volunteered last summer in Tanzania and Rebbie took on the communications officer role during the 2017 autumn cycle in Nepal.

“I really admire the perseverance and organisation of Raleigh and I found my initial experience [last summer] so rewarding. Raleigh are steadfast in what they are trying to achieve, I could think of no better way to spend my time than volunteering here. Raleigh is an organisation I can get behind, I believe in its ethics. I learned so much on a very personal level as well as a career level. I understand myself in new ways and this provided the environment to improve, even as an older person I continue to learn.”

– Hilary, spring cycle photographer.

Photographer Hilary working with deputy operations manager, Onesmo. Image by Rebbie.

The permanent team here in Tanzania have embraced the arrival of the advance team. Energetic and enthusiastic, the team have encouraged all of the advance team staff to understand operations at fieldbase including what each of the projects involve as well as introducing them to Morogoro town. team and the surrounding area and feel at home. Over the coming few months the fieldbase team will work with the permanent staff as well as the expedition volunteer managers and ICS team leaders who arrived today, Wednesday 31st January. Many of the advance team are even enjoying speaking a few words in Kiswahili already!

Emmy (left) will be deputy operations manager and Dan (right) will be one of the ICS medics this spring. Karibu Emmy and Dan! Image by Rebbie, communications officer.

Together we hope to inspire communities and young people around the world to create lasting change. Keep up to date with the progress on each of the projects by subscribing to the blog and following us on Facebook and Instagram.

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